James Bevan Trophy
|No. of teams||2|
|Most recent champion(s)||Australia|
The James Bevan Trophy is a rugby union trophy which was created in 2007, and named after James Bevan, the Welsh Australian who was the first ever captain of the Wales rugby union team in 1881. The trophy was established after a decision on 10 May 2007 by the Welsh and Australian rugby unions to celebrate the 100 years of Test rugby between the two sides. Australia are the current holders.
The Trophy was commissioned by International Business Wales, the economic arm of the Welsh assembly government.
Australia snatched victory in the inaugural James Bevan Trophy test match 29–23 with a last minute try on Saturday 26 May 2007 at the Telstra Stadium in Sydney. They followed this up with a whitewash 31–0 victory at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.
Wales captured the trophy the following year in 2008 with a 21-18 victory in Cardiff, but since then it has remained in Australian hands. Three victories in Cardiff in 2009-11 were followed up by a 3-0 series win in Australia in 2012, all by narrow margins. In the return match in Cardiff, Australia once again won with a last minute try.
The 2011 Rugby World Cup brought Australia and Wales together again for a third place play-off and once again it was a close finish with Australia claiming third place in a reversal of the first World Cup in 1987 when Wales won the play-off 22-21.
In the last 3 trophy matches Wales were leading, only for Australia to score the winning points in the 80th, 74th and 79th minute.
History of previous matches between Australia and Wales
Since 1908 Australia and Wales have competed against each other 36 times, Australia winning 25, Wales 10, with 1 draw. In the first 70 years Wales won 6 of the 8 matches. Over the next 10 years it was fairly even, but since that first World Cup, Australia has dominated by 20 wins to 2. The 2006 match ended in the second highest scoring draw of all time, 29-29.
2012 Welsh Tour of Australia
This three match series would decide the James Bevan Trophy. In the first test Australia scored a late try to win 27-19. In the second test, Australia snatched victory by 25-23 with an after the siren penalty. They went on to win the 2012 Wales rugby union tour of Australia by beating Wales by a single point 20-19 in the final test, thus retaining the trophy with three narrow victories.
- BBC Sport Page
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